30 September 2011

Balloon Fiesta

is an Albuquerque event. but on the way home from the gym I was entering my local Starbuck's & an elderly gentleman was leaving & stoppd me to say there was in balloon in the field of the nearby middle school.

with a venti coffee in hand I watchd the deflation of a balloon as I walkd home. by the time I got my camera the balloon was pretty dead. but then I turnd on my computer & neighbor Phil had e-maild me this picture he took from his backyard.

& here is mine taken shortly after:

I remember some years ago when a balloon was launchd from the school's football field which is directly across the arroyo from my yard.

28 September 2011

everything new is old too soon

my cell phone is just over 2 years old & began to die (& I'm not a phoner so use it only a couple times a week). I went in for a new one. the folks at Best Buy were wonderful but I'm sure they thot I was quite the antique for thinking that 2 years isn't nearly long enuf of a life. the new phone is beautiful & a bit confusing & does way too much but I'm happy to have it & hope the learning curve isn't too steep.

25 September 2011

star of the future

Ruben Rascon is a local boy who I saw dance today at a benefit to raise funds to send him to Russia where he'll study with the Bolshoi.

24 September 2011

private bathrooms?

reading abt the new college trend for boutique housing made me remember my undergrad days at Kent State.

I lived in room 321 of Stopher Hall. it was a 2-man room. my first roommate was a problem but subsequent ones were rewarding. before I moved west I visitd the old dorm -- which at that time had been closd down.

in addition to the obligatory photos of me in my room I wantd one in the bathroom down the hall.

there is something elemental abt communal living. & of all the bathroom areas in my life that one seems to have quite the imprint. & because the university knockd down that building (the current Stopher Hall is one I've never been in) these photos are all the more poignant.

here's a poem from the Kent section of Ohio Triangle:


when I saw
my dorm fallen
I wantd to search
the rubble
for a linoleum square
from the floor
of room 321
or a manila block
from the showers
I wantd to hold
my memories
but I walkd on

22 September 2011

the saddest part

of reading my high school reunion booklet is the "in memory" section. there were 465 graduates in our class. according to the booklet 80 have died. & then an e-mail from the reunion committee informing us of 3 more deaths. among those was Denise Gainer.

Denise was a 5-foot blonde who was movie-star beautiful. she was an early girl crush. we "dated" briefly. here's a picture taken in the Woolworth photo booth in downtown Elyria.

she began singing lessons at age 9 & was doing commercials at the same time she was appearing in the high school choir alongside the late Jimmie F. Skaggs. throuout high school she appeard on Cleveland tv shows & after graduation became a vocalist with Blue Barron's band. later she appeard on stage in Chicago. somewhere along the way I lost touch. I heard she got married but knew nothing more of her life.

21 September 2011

back in my Ohio days

a fall tradition for Lorain Countians was to go to Grobe's for apples & cider. last week I did it again with Mom's next door neighbor Betty Mulligan (the woman mentiond in the poem "View from the Porch").

besides gala apples & cider I got the last of the peaches & some of the best corn ever.

20 September 2011

Alexander Rivera is an artist & animator who also serves as vice president of Lorain Arts Council. the other nite he presentd me with this drawing he did during the reading.

didn't post

during my week in Elyria because my ipad wdn't connect to the internet on Winckles St.

Mom & I had a super time together. she loved every minute of being a star. with her blessing I slippd out the nite after her birthday. John Burroughs askd me to read with him at Lorain Arts Council. it was quite a nite.

John Stuehr -- who I hadn't seen in years -- took a bunch of good photos which he postd on Facebook. here's one:

I dedicatd my reading to Mom. LAC director Antonio Barrios passd a birthday card around for signatures afterward & then surprisd me with the hugh cookie postd earlier.

19 September 2011


is grateful to all who sent good wishes. we celebratd for a whole week.

06 September 2011

A1 in my bibliography

poking around World Cat I discoverd what libraries have my first book:

Abraxas Press brought this out in the spring of 1969 in an edition of 200 copies. some covers have blue in the waves & some don't.

05 September 2011

Hugh Fox (1932-2011)

Hugh included me in his legendary 1969 anthology The Living Underground. & in 1971 I publishd a short piece of his in the d. a. levy issue of The Serif.

a summer of

heat & drought was disaster for plants I like. but we're finally getting some rains & altho it's late in the season some plants are coming back from the dead. just before winter.

04 September 2011

"How big or small would your list be?"

a week or so ago Mark Young brought out my book of Hollywood poems. almost immediately thereafter Otoliths releasd Tom Beckett's Parts and Other Pieces
# # #

I've known Tom Beckett for more than 3 decades. he publishd my Postcard Poems 33 years ago.

# # #

here we are at my retirement party in 1993.

he'd just written in the guest book:

The pronouns inside
you now
won't quit.

# # #

if Steve Allen was the Answer Man then Tom Beckett is the Question Man. the questions he offers in his series of interviews are legend. his interview with me had its difficult moments. he wantd me to go places I didn't care to travel. but he's insistent & together we went there. & I'm grateful.

his new book opens with a list of questions. they already have a place in American letters. "Questions at Ohio State" were being talkd abt & written abt from the moment Tom performd them in Columbus a year ago.

# # #

a line from my book:

white on white on white

a line from his book:

I and I and I.

# # #

I've never slept with Tom but we have sex every time I read "Andswerving Fragmeants."

# # #

this man who sees himself as a "gimpy graceless person" is an idea gazelle. on the page his dance can be delicate or savage.

# # #

postpone the orchids.
this isn't a date.
I'm a size queen
who declares Beckett's book
one of the big achievements of listmaking.

# # #

& did I mention?
he makes me laugh.